David Litchfield, The Bear and the Piano
Published 2015 by Frances Lincoln, 40p
Music is one of the most profound arts and its effects on our soul and mind are utterly powerful. It speaks a universal language and beautiful sounds can melt all hearts. David Litchfield tells a story about such powerful music and about the importance of following dreams without forgetting origins.
A young bear found a piano in the forest and was touched by the beautiful sounds it made. After years of practicing, his stubby paws could play wonderful melodies that brought happiness in his heart.
It wasn’t long before the other bears in the forest were drawn to the clearing. Every night, a crowd gathered to listen to the magical melodies coming from the bear and the strange thing.
His music was heard by a father and his daughter and shortly they took the bear to the city. He became a world famous pianist, played sold-out concerts and his name was up in big, bright lights.
He won awards. He met new people everyday and created headlines everywhere he went.
But deep in his heart the bear missed the forest and his friends. Hastily he crossed the river and nervous that his friends might have forgotten him, the bear returned to the familiar clearing. And then he saw something that made his fur stand on end. The bear had not been forgotten; his friends kept his old piano safe and were proud of his fame. In return, the pianist sat down at his piano and played for the most important audience.
The illustrations are charming and gracefully express all bear’s emotions – the happiness he finds in music, the thrill to explore the big city, the loneliness he feels being away from home, the relief when realizing his friends didn’t forget him.